Old Bags benefit mental health
GRASONVILLE — It was a “fabulous party” at the Old Bags Luncheon fundraiser on Friday, Sept. 16, at the Prospect Bay Country Club with women shopping for purses loaded with goodies before they sat down for a fancy lunch.
And proceeds benefit mental health services and the people they serve in Queen Anne’s County.
Almost 200 people were expected at the luncheon where they bought or bid on more than 300 purses which were donated. The purses, either new or gently used, were sold to people or bid on with a silent auction. There was also a Chinese raffle where the women put raffle tickets into Chinese food cartons and winners are selected.
“It was a fabulous party. I know we made in the midst of $26,000 to $28,000. All the things were donated and everything was profit. All the people who donated are local,” said Debbie Shiley, chairwoman of the event.
She expects more exact figures on the total amount raised later on.
Proceeds from the event’s sales will suppor t the Queen Anne’s County Mental Health Committee’s efforts to provide and enhance mental health services in the county. The committee sponsored the fundraiser.
“All [funds] go to local programs that help people in the community who need services for mental health,” Shiley said.
Many purses were loaded with donated goodies, ranging from jewelry to wine to one backpack that came with a red and gray bicycle. The purses ranged from bargains to fabulous fakes to more expensive bags.
Auctioned off was “A Night with Chef Paul” where 10 guests were invited to share an evening with the executive chief in his kitchen at the Knoxie’s Table at the Inn at Chesapeake Bay Beach Club in Stevensville.
One of those shopping for a purse was Heather Guerieri of Chester. She’s director of Compass Regional Hospice. “This is my second year, just to support the local charities. Everybody supports hospice,” she said.
“This is my first year,” said Karen Colony of Stevensville. “I’m loving the silent auction. I have a feeling some [things] will be going home with me today.”
Thanks to the Queen Anne’s County Mental Health Committee, in 2015, more than $37,500 in grants was awarded to the following organizations: Queen Anne’s County Health Department’s Healthy Families Program; Crossroads Community Inc.; Corsica River Mental Health Inc.; Haven Ministries; Queen Anne’s County Health Department’s Healthy Nurturing Program; Talisman Therapeutic Riding; Eastern Shore Hospital Center; and Compass Regional Hospice.
The committee is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization established to support those members of the community who need assistance coping with mental illness. The group was founded in 1986 by L ynette Nielson, who realized that local mental health programs needed access to additional funds to serve the needs of their patients.
The Queen Anne’s County Mental Health Committee sponsored the Old Bags Luncheon on Friday, Sept. 16, at the Prospect Bay Country Club. From left, Bobbie Cusimano, Debbie Dean and Salena Barrett, all committee members.
These three ladies checked people in at the Old Bags Luncheon on Friday, Sept. 16, at the Prospect Bay Country Club in Grasonville. From left are Julie Dixon of Grasonville, Susan Vianna of Chester, and Jennifer Helfenbein of Queenstown.